Rev. Warren Stewart's New Book Explores Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday In Arizona

By Steve Goldstein
Published: Wednesday, May 20, 2015 - 2:22pm
Updated: Wednesday, May 20, 2015 - 3:47pm
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Martin Luther King Jr. addresses a crowd at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. where he delivered his famous, “I Have a Dream,” speech, Aug. 28, 1963.

Nearly three decades ago, Evan Mecham became Arizona’s governor and it didn’t take long for him to generate national controversy.

Mecham rescinded the order of his predecessor, Bruce Babbitt, that declared a holiday honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Arizona. It took a number of years and conflicting ballot measures, but Arizona eventually became the first state with a voter-approved King day.

One of the leaders in making that a reality is Rev. Warren Stewart, longtime pastor of the First Institutional Baptist Church in Phoenix. He tells the story of the holiday coming to fruition in the new book, "Victory Together for Martin Luther King Junior."

We talked with Stewart.